CONCERNS about the behaviour of Wiltshire’s most prolific paedophile had been first reported to police in 2011 – six years before he was first arrested.

Peter Daniels was jailed for life this week for 78 counts of child sex abuse against 22 young victims. The youngest was aged just two.

But the Alderbury man was first flagged to police in 2011. But the investigation was closed at it wasn’t until 2017 that he was eventually arrested. A number of his victims were abused in the intervening six years.

Concerns had been raised about Daniels' involvement with his victims, including by staff at a Salisbury school where Daniels became known as "Uncle Peter", almost at the beginning of his crimes. Claire Daniels, for the Crown Prosecution Service, said: "He was, on the face of it, a respected member of the community."

"He was clearly able to ingratiate himself with a number of families.

"Mr Daniels in the community was regarded almost as an uncle to these children – a loving, caring uncle, who looked after them, treated them with kindness and love, treated them to days out and gifts and made them feel special.”

A Wiltshire Police spokesman said: “Daniels had come to police attention previously. In 2011, a concern was raised about Daniels and a number of people, including children, were spoken to by police. This was fully investigated, but no reports of abuse were disclosed to officers and no evidence of any wrongdoing was found. Prior to 2017 Daniels had not been arrested and had no previous convictions.”